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WestGrid Computing Facilities
- National Resources
- WestGrid Systems
- WestGrid Legacy Systems (Defunded and locally operated only)
- Retired WestGrid Systems
The WestGrid computing facilities are distributed among several resource provider sites, with some specialization at each site. WestGrid is connected by high-performance networks so that users can access the system which best fits their needs, regardless of where it is physically located.
The systems are for high performance computing, so they are something beyond what you would find on a desktop. WestGrid provides several types of computing systems, since different users' programs will run best on different kinds of hardware. We have clusters, clusters with fast interconnect, and shared memory systems.
Which system should you use?
Use the system which best fits your needs, not necessarily the one closest to you.
See the QuickStart Guide for New Users introduction to choosing the most appropriate system. For more detailed technical information about the differences between the WestGrid systems, read the information below and in the linked pages for each system.
WestGrid's computing facilities are part of Compute Canada's national platform of Advanced Research Computing resources.
Compute Canada's new national sites offer expandable and modern data centres with highly qualified personnel. Operations of the new systems are delivered through national teams, drawing upon regional and local expertise distributed across Canada.
|University of Victoria||Arbutus / GP1 / Cloud-West|
|Simon Fraser University||Cedar / GP2|
|University of Waterloo||Graham / GP3|
|University of Toronto||Niagara / LP (Large Parallel) - in production mid-2018|
SFU & Waterloo
|National Data Cyberinfrastructure (NDC -Storage)|
Please refer to the CC User Documentation wiki for more information on national systems and services.
Migration to the New National Systems
Compute Canada has begun one of the biggest advanced research computing renewals in Canada’s history to replace several ageing systems with new national systems. For more information on the national migration process and the latest update to the technology refresh program, please visit the Compute Canada website.
All current WestGrid systems were installed prior to 2012 and will be defunded by April 2018. For details about this process, as well as key information and instructions for WestGrid users, visit our Migration Process page.
|Arbutus||University of Victoria||7640||OpenStack Cloud||
Visit the CC-Cloud Resources page on the Compute Canada User Wiki for full system details.
|Bugaboo||Simon Fraser University||4584||Storage, Cluster with fast interconnect||
This system will be decommissioned on January 31, 2018. Visit the WestGrid Migration page for more information.
|Cedar||Simon Fraser University||27,696||Cluster with fast interconnect|
|Grex||University of Manitoba||3792||Storage, Cluster with fast interconnect||
|Orcinus||University of British Columbia||9600||Storage, Cluster with fast interconnect||
|ownCloud||Simon Fraser University||Storage|
|Parallel||University of Calgary||7056||Storage, Cluster with fast interconnect, Visualization||
List of WestGrid facilities by general type
- Cluster with fast interconnect
- Bugaboo, Grex, Orcinus, Parallel
- Parallel has special nodes with Graphics Processing Units (GPUs).
Some older WestGrid systems have been removed from general service, typically being replaced with more energy-efficient machines with more capability.
|Machine name||Period of Service||Description|
|Dec. 2008 - Mar. 2017||
Silo was the primary storage facility at WestGrid with over 3.15 PB (3150 TB) of spinning disk. It was an archival facility, which was backed up. There were two main login servers: Silo and Hopper. Silo and Hopper shared filesystems.
Disk storage: total 4.2 PB raw, 3.15 PB usable
Tape System: IBM LTO 3584 tape library
Backup Software: IBM Tivoli Storage Manager (TSM)
Hermes / Nestor
|July 2010-June 2017||
Hermes & Nestor were systems located at the University of Victoria.